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<Archive Obituary> Coco The Clown (September 25th 1974)
Bill Schenley
2007-09-25 13:08:59 UTC
Nikolai Polokous Dies; Britain's Coco the Clown

Photo:
http://images.npg.org.uk/OCimg/websm/9/2/mw60892.jpg

FROM: The New York Times (September 27th 1974) ~
By The United Press International

PETERBOROUGH, England, Sept. 28

Nikolai Polokous, who as Coco the Clown
brought laughter to British circus audiences
for 60 years, died yesterday in a hospital
here. He was 78 years old.

Mr. Polokous, son of a Russian clown, was
an apprentice before becoming a fully paid
clown at the age of 11.

He came to Britain in 1929 for a four-week
season with the Bertram Mills circus and
stayed with the company for nearly 40 years.
He became a national institution - his
outrageous red wig, bulbous nose and huge
boots an instantly recognized trademark.

He retired after a car accident in 1959 but came
out of retirement with the Roberts Brothers
Circus last year.

"I would still be a clown if I had it over again,"
he said.

"You gotta be clever to make a fool of yourself."
---
Photo:
http://www.peopleplayuk.org.uk/images/objects/cropped2/300/sch200207010489-005.jpg
David Carson
2007-09-25 13:34:17 UTC
Post by Bill Schenley
He became a national institution - his
outrageous red wig, bulbous nose and huge
boots an instantly recognized trademark.
Because no other cl*wns have those things.
La N
2007-09-25 14:19:03 UTC
Fine with me. Cl*wns are evil.

- nilita (coulrophobic)
Bramble-Stick
2007-09-25 22:17:09 UTC
Post by Bill Schenley
Nikolai Polokous Dies; Britain's Coco the Clown
http://images.npg.org.uk/OCimg/websm/9/2/mw60892.jpg
FROM: The New York Times (September 27th 1974) ~
By The United Press International
PETERBOROUGH, England, Sept. 28
Nikolai Polokous, who as Coco the Clown
brought laughter to British circus audiences
for 60 years, died yesterday in a hospital
here. He was 78 years old.
Mr. Polokous, son of a Russian clown, was
an apprentice before becoming a fully paid
clown at the age of 11.
He came to Britain in 1929 for a four-week
season with the Bertram Mills circus and
stayed with the company for nearly 40 years.
He became a national institution - his
outrageous red wig, bulbous nose and huge
boots an instantly recognized trademark.
He retired after a car accident in 1959 but came
out of retirement with the Roberts Brothers
Circus last year.
"I would still be a clown if I had it over again,"
he said.
"You gotta be clever to make a fool of yourself."
---
http://www.peopleplayuk.org.uk/images/objects/cropped2/300/sch200207010489-005.jpg
In the early 60's he toured the UK schools with a road safety campaign,
complete with a Belisha beacon walking-stick. Even in his 70's he
illustrated the dangers of crossing roads with a prat-fall - I remember it
well: a kid in my class (from a travellers family) did a perfect rendition
of the move after the show. I tried the same thing at home and nearly ended
up in a wheelchair :-(
Great bloke (Coco, that is)

Bramble-stick
Ron
2007-09-25 23:19:39 UTC
Post by Bramble-Stick
Post by Bill Schenley
"You gotta be clever to make a fool of yourself."
---
http://www.peopleplayuk.org.uk/images/objects/cropped2/300/sch200207010489-005.jpg
In the early 60's he toured the UK schools with a road safety
campaign, complete with a Belisha beacon walking-stick. Even in his
70's he illustrated the dangers of crossing roads with a prat-fall -
I remember it well: a kid in my class (from a travellers family) did
a perfect rendition of the move after the show. I tried the same
thing at home and nearly ended up in a wheelchair :-(
I think that might be what he meant when he said: "You gotta be clever to
make a fool of yourself." There's a trick to doing pratfalls and
stunts...otherwise, you could get *hurt*.
--
R.E.Gentry